People, Places, Products and Praxis

“And you, forgotten, your memories ravaged by all the consternations of two hemispheres, stranded in the Red Cellars of Pali-Kao, without music and without geography, no longer setting out for the hacienda where the roots think of the child and where the wine is finished off with fables from an old almanac. Now that’s finished. You’ll never see the hacienda. It doesn’t exist.”

Christopher Gray Leaving the 20th Century
(with text appropriated from the Formulary for
a New Urbanism by Ivan Chtcheglov)

G is for Rob Gretton

Rob Gretton was born in 1953 and grew up on the post-war satellite estate of Wythenshawe, he was one of a generation who found a way out through pop music and football. Rob was best known as the eccentric manager of the bands Joy Division and New Order. He was also a partner in Factory Records, proprietor of the Rob’s Records label and a co-founder, along with Tony Wilson, of The Ha├žienda in Manchester. He was portrayed by Paddy Considine in the 2002 film 24 Hour Party People, which documented the rise and fall of Factory Records, and by Toby Kebbell in the 2007 film Control, a biopic of Joy Division singer Ian Curtis.

Rob Gretton

Gretton’s involvement with the Manchester scene began when he contributed £200 to co-finance Slaughter and the Dogs’ first single, the punk classic Cranked Up Really High. Between 1996 and 1999, Rob Gretton managed his last Manchester fledglings Gabrielles Wish, signing them to his own label, Rob’s Records.

Slaughter and the Dogs Cranked Up Really High

A loyal supporter of Manchester City FC, he died in May 1999 at age 46 as the result of a heart attack. And you forgotten A Memorial Event for Rob Gretton was held in the Ritz, Manchester on May 23 2004, the event was given the Factory catalogue number, Fac 511 by Tony Wilson because “Rob would have been 51 this year...”

Fac 511 And you forgotten Memorial event poster

Texts and images re-structured from various sources - respect and thanks to those I have sampled. The output of Factory Records inspired me as a teenager and still inspires and informs me today: thank you, Tony Wilson.